Master of Public Health Degree Program

Program Concentrations

Biostatistics

The Biostatistics concentration prepares you in applying statistical methods and the related data management/mining techniques to problems in health sciences, medicine, and biology.

The coursework exposes you to statistical methodology typically used to analyze different types of health-related data and gives them opportunities to apply these methodologies themselves.

You will have the opportunity to collaborate with faculty and leaders in the community to apply research skills to practical projects related to public health.

Explore Program Details

Curriculum

During the Master of Public Health program, our students complete coursework in core public health courses as well as courses specific to their concentration area. Students typically take two years to complete the MPH degree (three semesters of coursework and a one-semester applied learning experience).

Full curriculum details (Tab Sheet).

Faculty

Zhongxue Chen
Zhongxue Chen
Email:
Phone: (812) 855-1163
PHC104

Jaroslaw Harezlak
Jaroslaw Harezlak
Email:
Phone:
PHC107

David King
David King
Email:
Phone: (812) 855-1116
PHC113

Nianjun Liu
Nianjun Liu
Email:
Phone: (812) 855-7506
PHC111

Pengcheng Xun
Pengcheng Xun
Email:
Phone: (812) 856-0772
PHC103

Research and Community Engagement

Students have opportunities to work with faculty members in different areas of public health research. Examples of recent research projects include:

  • Students have opportunities to work with faculty members in different areas of public health research. Example research projects include:
    • Statistical Models for Multi-Modal Brain Imaging Studies of HIV-Associated Cognitive Decline: Determine imaging markers discriminating between HIV-infected patients and matched HIV-negative controls and establish specific biomarkers of neurocognitive impairment diagnosis and progression among HIV-infected individuals. (Dr. Jaroslaw Harezlak)
    • Trace Element Levels and Risk of Stroke: Examine the associations between trace element levels and stroke risk and to investigate whether geographic variation of trace element levels is related to the "Stroke Belt", a region of highest stroke mortality in the Southeastern US. (Dr. Ka He)
    • Trace Mineral Levels, the Trajectory of Cognitive Decline and Telomere Attrition: Examine the longitudinal associations between trace mineral levels and cognitive decline and leukocyte telomere length. (Dr. Ka He)
    • Analysis and Risk Prediction of Dental Caries and Oral Clefts: Identify novel genetic variants contributing to dental caries and orofacial clefting and to use the results to predict the risk of their occurring. (Dr. Nianjun Liu)
    • Statistical Method Development for High-Dimensional Genetics Data: Develop new statistical methods to facilitate the identification of novel genetic variants contributing to complex diseases such as dental caries and orofacial clefts, and the prediction of the risk of their occurring using genome-wide data. (Dr. Nianjun Liu)
    • Diabetes, Metformin, and Breast Cancer Prognosis: Use data from the Women's Health Initiative, a large prospective cohort study, to assess the influence of pre-existing diabetes and diabetes treatment, particularly metformin, on the prognosis of patients with breast cancer. (Dr. Juhua Luo)
    • Physical and Cognitive Rest and Sports-Related Concussions: Examine the patterns of rest used by youth recovering from sports-related concussions and to identify the optimal rest levels for these patients. (Dr. PengCheng Xun)
  • Biostatistics Consulting Center:
    • Students, under the supervision of faculty members, have the opportunity to provide study design and data analysis support for health-related research.
  • Community collaborations that engage in research:
    • Organizations include Indiana Minority Health Coalition, Indiana Public Health Association, IU Health, Positive Link, Cook Medical, IU Bloomington Hospital, Centerstone Research Institute.

Applied Practice Experience

The MPH degree prepares students to serve as public health professionals and leaders in government, business, industry, higher education, volunteer agencies, and public and private sector healthcare settings. A variety of field experience opportunities are available for MPH students. It is highly recommended that students speak with their advisors and personally research possible field experience sites. Please review the course requirements in the MPH Field Experience Handbook.

Students have completed their field experiences in a variety of settings which include:

Competencies

In addition to MPH Foundational Competencies for MPH Students in the School of Public Health-Bloomington, after completing the Master of Public Health degree with a major in Biostatistics, students will be able to:

  • Describe the roles biostatistics serve in the discipline of public health.
  • Apply descriptive and inferential methodologies according to the type of data model for answering a particular public health research question.
  • Interpret results of statistical analyses for/in public health studies.
  • Explain general principles of experimental design in attempting to identify risk factors for disease.
  • Apply statistical reasoning to structure thinking and solve a wide range of problems in public health.
  • Use information technology to access, analyze, and interpret public health data.
  • Choose appropriate multivariate statistical methods to address research questions.
  • Conduct multivariate statistical analysis with empirical data and interpret computer output correctly.
  • Comprehend and critique research papers that use multivariate statistical methods.
  • Use appropriate statistical approaches to study the relationships among categorical dependent variable and predictors to answer research questions.
  • Use appropriate linear models to study the relationships among variables to answer research questions.
  • Specify statistical models according to the structure of the multilevel or longitudinal data.
  • Conduct longitudinal analysis with empirical data and interpret computer output correctly.
  • Comprehend and critique research papers that use longitudinal analysis methods.
  • Describe the role statistical packages serve in the discipline of public health.
  • Describe and apply data management skills to handle research data in public heath area
  • Apply basic descriptive and inferential statistics to analyze research data in public health area and interpret the results properly.
  • Use appropriate statistical methods to study the relationship among censored outcomes and independent variables to answer research questions

Next Steps in Your Public Health Career

An MPH from the IU School of Public Health-Bloomington opens doors to a variety of exciting opportunities. Tracking of post-graduation outcomes of the most recent cohort of MPH graduates revealed that 88 percent of graduates reported employment or continuing education within six months of earning their degree (with the outcomes of 95% of MPH graduates known). The Office of Career Services in our school offers a valuable array of advice and support for our MPH students in successfully pursuing their career goals.

Graduates of the Biostatistics concentration get positions as:

  • Biostatistician in Academia, Research Institutions, and Government Departments and Agencies
  • Data Analyst in Medical and Health Centers
  • Clinical Trials Supervisor
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Project Designer
  • Public Health Researcher
  • Senior Quality Improvement Analyst
  • Statistical Consulting Services